“Technically, I’m a murderer, but I like to think that’s one of my better qualities.”
― Alexandra Christo,
To Kill a Kingdom
By: Alexandra Christo
Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. Until a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own. To punish her daughter, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into the one thing they loathe most—a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian’s heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever.
The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby—it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears. She promises to help him find the key to destroying all of sirenkind for good—But can he trust her? And just how many deals will Elian have to barter to eliminate mankind’s greatest enemy?
I’ve been putting off this review in hopes of determining how to best express my feelings on this book. I’m not sure that this review will do it justice but I’m definitely going to try.
I originally received this book in my Litjoy Crate. I had other books prioritized for reading and it got pushed to the wayside. I am so sad that I put it off. I adored this novel.
Lately some YA Fantasy novels have felt a bit formulaic. That was certainly not the case with To Kill a Kingdom. The reader is put into a world that is fantastical yet doesn’t include fairies or humans with powers. Instead the fantastical elements come from sea creatures such as sirens, mermaids, and mermen. It is as though a pirate’s tall tale came to life. This actually worried me at first. I was fearful that it would be cheesy. However, Christo addresses these fantastical creatures in a way I’ve never seen before. This is no Little Mermaid.
In addition to a creative and beautiful world I loved how Christo wrote the women in this novel. They were all strong and had more to give than sarcastic remarks or beauty. They were admired for their minds and abilities.
It was great to read a novel that didn’t offer a disclaimer line. I’ve found that often in novels we can see women in strong roles. However, many times those roles come with some sort of disclaimer line. It is inevitable that someone addresses that “despite being a woman she was _____.” Christo felt no need to include that. Disclaimer lines are unnecessary and I love that Christo just let the strength of her characters speak for themselves regardless of gender.
Another aspect of this novel that I loved was the dialogue between characters. I love quick and witty banter. I am truly a sucker for it. The dialogue in this novel was great. It kept me entertained and laughing despite dire situations.
Overall, I adored Christo’s writing and the incredible tale she wove through this novel. I can’t wait to see what is next from her. You can be sure I will be pre-ordering her next book no matter what.
Have you read To Kill a Kingdom? What’s another fantasy novel I should read instead?